Thursday, October 8, 2009

Lots of Safe Driving Stuff

We almost missed it!
Drive Safely Work Week is Oct. 5-9
The Network of Employers for Traffic Safety is sponsoring Drive Safely Work Week, Oct. 5-9. This year's theme is "Drive Focused. Drive Smart. Get Home Safely." It focuses on the issues of distracted driving and minimizing the impact that driving habits can have on the environment.

Traffic crashes are the No. 1 cause of workplace injury and death. Northwest employers/workers be sure to mark your calendars for the May 20, 2010 WA Traffic Safety Conference and plan to attend. Plans are underway for another informative agenda. Stay tuned. We also welcome ideas and comments - if there is a topic that especially interests you, please let us know.

If you don't want to wait until May to be sure your employees are operating as defensive drivers, consider scheduling an EverSafe Driving Program onsite training. Our experienced trainers can come to your organization and focus on your employees driving situations and concerns.

Obama bans federal employees from text messaging while driving
At the conclusion of a two-day summit on distracted driving, Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood announced President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order prohibiting federal employees from text messaging while driving in government-owned vehicles.

"This order sends a very clear signal to the American public that distracted driving is dangerous and unacceptable. It shows that the federal government is leading by example," LaHood said.

The summit, which took place Sept. 30-Oct. 1 in Washington DC, attracted senior transportation officials, elected officials, safety advocates, law enforcement representatives, private-sector representatives and academics.

The administration's plan includes the creation of three separate rulemakings establishing restrictions and penalties for cell phone use and texting while operating vehicles. The rules would affect rail operators, truck and interstate bus operators and commercial motor vehicle drivers.

Does your organization have a written plan in place regarding cell phone use and texting while driving on company business? You should. If you need help or don't know where to start, ESC can help.

NHTSA: Quiet hybrid vehicles a risk to pedestrians, bicyclists
The quiet engines in hybrid vehicles may pose a safety risk to pedestrians and bicyclists, according to a new study (.pdf file) from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Researchers compared the number of pedestrian and bicyclist crashes involving both hybrid electric vehicles (HEV) and more common internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. Findings show that vehicles with the quiet HEV engines have higher-incidence crash rates.

Additional findings show:
- Pedestrians were twice as likely to be hit by an HEV when the vehicle was slowing or stopping, backing up, or entering or exiting a parking space.
- Bicyclist crashes involving HEVs at intersections or interchanges were significantly higher than those involving ICE vehicles.

Parent-teen interaction decreases teen crash fatalities: study
The way parents communicate rules and monitor teens' driving could reduce the chances that teens will take part in risky driving behavior and be involved in a crash, according to new research (.pdf file) conducted by the Center for Injury Research and Prevention at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

As part of CIRP's Young Driver Research Initiative, researchers released findings from two studies on Sept. 28. According to a study abstract, the first study shows teens who had supportive parents who established rules were:
- Half as likely to be involved in a crash
- 71 percent less likely to drive while intoxicated
- Less likely to use a cell phone while driving
- More likely to use seat belts

The second study shows teens who reported being the main driver of a vehicle were more likely to get in a crash than teens who shared a vehicle with other family members.

Researchers also noted the effectiveness of Graduated Driver Licensing laws in reducing teen crash rates during the first 6-12 months of driving.

Teens appreciate online and computer training. Consider taking the Coaching the Experienced Driver CD-ROM/web based training program. It's a great way to start a dialog between you and your teen regarding driving situations, proper reactions and the rules of the road. Order online today.

Source: The National Safety Council


  1. I would encourage you and your readers to check out - a new mobile solution that is easy to download and install; it helps keep users focused on the road and not their phones.

  2. Regarding the quieter hybrids and safety, I had that experience just today while out on a walk on a neighborhood street. I was walking down a steep hill and notice the folks walking up looking at me and then behind me? When I looked around there was a hybrid SUV just behind me patiently waiting to pass me on this rather narrow road. I was walking on the side of the road since there was no sidewalk. I made a mental note of this issue and e mailed my daughters on it too. Toss in the iPod and other distractions and this quiet hybrid issue can only be more of a challenge


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